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Temporary Autonomous

ting conducted research on translation theory, critical theory, and Western philosophy to translate a book from English to Traditional Chinese. 5,000 copies of the translated text were made available for free in Hong Kong in 2020 with the help of 40+ volunteers. This project aims to promote heterogeneity in perspectives and ideological states in the city’s most active class of protestors, university students. 

Media Summary

A collection of photographs taken by either my volunteers or myself documenting the project.


A reading of the first chapter with some of the volunteers who came to a symposium-style gathering I organized at ACO Books. 

An interview with Free Think Press from the US covering the Hong Kong protests

on LIHKG, a popular local forum

Posters that bring awareness to the postest-literature telegram channel were posted in coffee shops, elevators, and street corners.

Posters were shared around the internet.

on a Telegram channel where 

              resistance activities are posted 

     on a daily basis

on instagram by a book exchange app

              on a telegram channel that broadcasts protest-related news

         The volunteer team who live, work, study at

                                        different districts and universities

                   set up book stations to offer the books

to people who are interested 

                                          The Chinese University of Hong Kong

                                                                             campus book station

The University of Hong Kong campus book stations

Book station in a coffee shop

Book station in a music school

Book station in

              a bookstore

Book station in a music school

And many more places......

And another reading of the book at another protest

Another reading of the book at a protest

Project Statement

This art-as-civic action initiative has several wildly different pieces involved in its making. As an artist, I have always seen art as something that cannot be confined inside exhibits, galleries, and museums. To a lot of people who make art, art exists in the process of making. We make communities in the process of making art. For me, the most fulfilling moments when I make art is when I see people coming together and socialize in the backdrop of an art show. Art should be a platform where unlikely strangers meet and discuss topics meaningful to them.

When I got wind of the massive protests against an extradition law being proposed in Hong Kong, I knew I needed to contribute in some way. Using the translation of the Temporary Autonomous Zone as the center piece, I wanted to create a platform that enables discussions and exploration of new political perspectives. At the end, I ended up with a project which lies in the intersection of art, translation, and civic action. It was a precious opportunity to experience the power of a community, and the tenacity mutual aid provides to a political movement.

This project owes its success to the 40+ enthusiastic volunteers who contributed time and energy to various tasks, including: ​

  • translation reviews

  • footnote reviews

  • translation iterations

  • distribution location scouts

  • digital messengering

  • transportation of cargos

  • distribution of books


While this project never had a fixed project team, the fluidity of the team's dynamic and the wide set of talent in were instrumental to the realization of what would have diminish into a flashing thought without their contribution. For a full review on the translation, publication, and community engagement process in this project, please visit the link below.


Book Design & Illustrations

A series of illustrations produced exclusively for the Traditional Chinese translation of the Temporary Autonomous Zone.

Commodity Fetishism

          (found digital media collage)

          Music as an Organizational Principle

(3D modeling and image processing)


          (digital media collage and image processing)

The Magic of Disappearance

                           (digital design)

                         Islands in the Net

(processed photograph)

                                                                 Anne Bonnie

(Processed historic illustration and graphic design)

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